Necessity is the mother of all inventions, and so the businesses of today need to go green because the world demands it. We have used up the resources form the earth to fuel our industries, homes and automobiles for hundreds of years and got ourselves into more trouble. We have been using up all the resources and depleting the environment with each passing year as our civilization made progress, and we have dug ourselves deeper into an environmental mess. Scientists and ecopreneurs of today have also worked hard to come up with green solutions.
We are going to highlight some of the brightest ideas and ecovations of the current time in this blog. But before we do, let us define what green business really is.
What is a green business?
It used to be that you had to choose between environment and performance, but with the latest innovations and technological advancements, it is no longer true. Green products of today are just as effective as conventional products without the negative side effects. By definition, a green business operates in a way where no negative impact is made on the local or global environment, the community, or the economy. A green business will also engage in forward-thinking policies for environmental concerns and policies affecting human rights. (Business Dictionary)
Top 6 Green Business Ideas
Below is a list of the Top 6 Green Business Ideas and businesses that operate in a sustainable manner.
1. Cement from CO2
A California based company Celera found a way to turn carbon dioxide from the air into cement, which Scientific American calls “A Concrete Cure for Global Warming.” Celera has claimed that they are able to turn 90% of the carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and turn it into something useful like cement. Traditional cement manufacturing companies need to burn fossils in the manufacturing process where limestone, the key element of cement, needs to be heated at 2,640 degrees F. Celera has found a way where they divert carbon dioxide emission from factories and create cement by running them through calcium and magnesium-rich seawater.
2. Electric vehicles
While electric motor vehicles may not sound like a new invention, the new all-electric roadster from Telsa Motors might be putting the power back into the battery-powered vehicles. The newly designed fully electric Telsa roadster has an impressive acceleration rate that goes from 0 to 60 in 3.7 seconds, and it gets up to a governed top speed of 125 miles per hour; pretty impressive for a battery powered car right? The best part is you are able to drive 245 miles on a full charge and with zero tailpipe emission.
3. Green & clean coal
Clean coal does sound like an oxymoron because coal is the dirtiest fossil known to man, with the highest amount of emissions contributing to pollution and greenhouse gases. However, green coal or clean coal technology is another one of the amazing inventions of current times. Massachusetts-based company GreatPoint Energy has figured out a way to turn coal into natural gas faster and cheaper than traditional gas fields. The company also claims that it is able to capture and take all the greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide, mercury, and sulfur out, which is emitted during the process and sell the end product, which is natural gas, cheaper than market prices.
4. Energy from landfill waste
Landfill Gas (LFG) is produced when solid waste decomposes in the landfill. In 2012, Americans generated about 251 million tons of trash. This solid waste is available as a source of renewable energy. Landfill gas consists of approximately 50% methane, 42% carbon dioxide, 7% nitrogen and 1% oxygen compounds (Energy Systems Group). Coskata is one of the leading companies in producing fuel from landfill waste by processing waste gas in a bacteria-based bioreactor. Their method is incredibly energy-efficient, which uses half the water of corn ethanol production and it also cuts CO2 emissions by 84%.
5. Wind power
Modern day wind turbines are high tech versions of classic windmills. When wind blows on the rotors of the turbine, it moves and converts the wind’s kinetic energy into electrical energy, and that’s the basic idea behind wind turbines. Wind turbines can be small enough to generate energy for a small home, or large wind farm or wind parks have large numbers of wind turbines generating enough power together to supply power at a larger scale. Wind power generation techniques have been revolutionized in recent years with several new technologies that work in different ways.
Makani Power has developed a technology where they use a gigantic kite to harness energy from high altitude winds. Festo, a German automation company, has come up with a completely different idea of wind turbines. They have developed a device that uses the motions of flapping wings instead of rotating blades to generate power from wind. The device from Festo looks like a machine made for flying rather than a wind powered generator. However, the innovation is designed to catch low winds.
6. Solar power
Solar power is the best form of energy known to man today because it’s clean, renewable and abundant. With the latest improvements in solar panel technology, more and more solar panels are being added to national and state power grids. Cool Earth Solar has found a new way to generate energy form the sun with a slightly different approach. They are producing solar balloons to harness energy from the sun. This technology produces much more energy compared to traditional solar panels, enough to supply electric power for high-population urban areas in cost effective way.
Green is definitely in. Just as natural resources are becoming more costly and scarce, and most people are becoming increasingly conscious, there is no alternative but to develop green technologies for today’s market. As the benefits of sustainable business become more apparent, companies are becoming increasingly committed to being green in their products and business operations.
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